The Danish patient insurance system

Med Law. 2001;20(3):355-69.


In all Nordic countries, patient insurance schemes have now been introduced that ensure injured patients of an extended right to damages for injuries caused by treatment. The schemes are based on what can best be characterised as "no fault" liability. The article describes the background for the introduction of the patient insurance system in Denmark and gives an outline of the structure of the insurance scheme. The article also gives an account of the scope of the Danish Patient Insurance Act and the conditions for damages and compensation in pursuance of the Act. Examples are given of injury types for which damages may be obtained in pursuance of the Act. Finally, the article gives statistical information about, for example, the costs that have been connected with the introduction of the patient insurance scheme in Denmark and an evaluation of the importance it has had in that a decision has been made to separate the question of damages from the complaints system legislatively.

MeSH terms

  • Denmark
  • Humans
  • Insurance, Health*
  • Liability, Legal*
  • Medical Errors / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • National Health Programs / organization & administration*
  • Wounds and Injuries / economics*